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Criminal Profiles - Dissemination to Public.

SECTION 115.   Section 5 of chapter 112 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2010 Official Edition, is hereby amended by striking out the sixth, seventh and eighth paragraphs and inserting in place thereof the following 4 paragraphs: -

The board shall collect the following information reported to it to create individual profiles on licensees and former licensees in a format created by the board that shall be available for dissemination to the public: (a) a description of any criminal convictions for felonies and serious misdemeanors as determined by the board; provided, however, that for the purposes of this clause, a person shall be considered to be convicted of a crime if the person pleaded guilty or was found or adjudged guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction; (b) a description of any charges for felonies and serious misdemeanors as determined by the board to which a physician pleads nolo contendere or where sufficient facts of guilt were found and the matter was continued without a finding by a court of competent jurisdiction; (c) a description of any final board disciplinary actions; (d) a description of any final disciplinary actions by licensing boards in other states; (e) a description of revocation or involuntary restriction of privileges by a hospital, clinic or nursing home under chapter 111, or of any employer who employs physicians licensed by the board for the purpose of engaging in the practice of medicine in the commonwealth, for reasons related to competence or character that have been taken by the governing body or any other official of the hospital, clinic or nursing home or employer who employs physicians licensed by the board for the purpose of engaging in the practice of medicine in the commonwealth after procedural due process has been afforded, or the resignation from or nonrenewal of medical staff membership or the restriction of privileges at a hospital, clinic or nursing home or employer who employs physicians licensed by the board for the purpose of engaging in the practice of medicine in the commonwealth taken in lieu of or in settlement of a pending disciplinary case related to competence or character in that hospital, clinic or nursing home or of any employer who employs physicians licensed by the board for the purpose of engaging in the practice of medicine or employer who employs physicians licensed by the board for the purpose of engaging in the practice of medicine in the commonwealth ; (f) all medical malpractice court judgments and all medical malpractice arbitration awards in which a payment is awarded to a complaining party and all settlements of medical malpractice claims in which a payment is made to a complaining party; provided, however, that dispositions of paid claims shall be reported in a minimum of 3 graduated categories indicating the level of significance of the award or settlement; provided further, that information concerning paid medical malpractice claims shall be put in context by comparing an individual licensee's medical malpractice judgment awards and settlements to the experience of other physicians within the same specialty; provided further, that information concerning all settlements shall be accompanied by the following statement: "Settlement of a claim may occur for a variety of reasons which do not necessarily reflect negatively on the professional competence or conduct of the physician; provided further, that a payment in settlement of a medical malpractice action or claim should not be construed as creating a presumption that medical malpractice has occurred; provided further, that nothing herein shall be construed to limit or prevent the board from providing further explanatory information regarding the significance of categories in which settlements are reported; provided further, that pending malpractice claims shall not be disclosed by the board to the public; provided further, that nothing herein shall be construed to prevent the board from investigating and disciplining a licensee on the basis of medical malpractice claims that are pending; (g) names of medical schools and dates of graduation; (h) graduate medical education; (i) specialty board certification; (j) number of years in practice; (k) names of the hospitals where the licensee has privileges; (l) appointments to medical school faculties and indication as to whether a licensee has a responsibility for graduate medical education within the most recent ten years; (m) information regarding publications in peer-reviewed medical literature within the most recent ten years; (n) information regarding professional or community service activities and awards; (o) the location of the licensee's primary practice setting; (p) the identification of any translating services that may be available at the licensee's primary practice location; (q) an indication of whether the licensee participates in the Medicaid program.

The board shall provide individual licensees with a copy of their profiles prior to release to the public. A licensee shall be provided a reasonable time to correct factual inaccuracies that appear in such profile. A physician may elect to have his profile omit certain information provided under clauses (l) to (n), inclusive, of the preceding paragraph concerning academic appointments and teaching responsibilities, publication in peer-reviewed journals and professional and community service awards. In collecting information for such profiles and in disseminating the same, the board shall inform physicians that they may choose not to provide such information required pursuant to said clauses (l) to (n), inclusive. For physicians who are no longer licensed by the board, the board shall continue to make available the profiles of such physicians, except for those who are known by the board to be deceased. The board shall maintain the information contained in the profiles of physicians no longer licensed by the board as of the date the physician was last licensed, and include on the profile a notice that the information is current only to that date.